Don’t say “no.” Say “Thanks for thinking of me. Here’s what I’d say yes to.”
It happens a lot. Recruiters contact prospective candidates for the wrong job. Often it is because they are fishing for leads or just don’t know how to read a resume. But sometimes, it is a recruiter with whom you want to have a decent relationship. And you don’t want to turn them away with a resounding, ‘no,’ you only want to educate them.
Or, it is an internal recruiter from a company with which you do want to work. It’s clear the recruiter just used a few key words to find your resume in their data base or worse, believes your success leading teams of 40+ is perfect for the first line management role she is chartered to fill. So, what’s a candidate to do? Don’t say “no.” It is negative and blocks further communications, instantly. In fact, the recruiter just stops listening and works hard to get off the phone as fast as possible once “no” is uttered.
Get over your anger or disappointment. Not everyone who can help you in your job search is savvy enough to understand the right job for you or even understand your credentials. It isn’t their fault and it doesn’t mean they won’t be valuable to your search.
Contacted by a large company internal recruiter, Art, a Senior Director, was invited to interview for a first line manager job with a team of seven developers. He was insulted, to say the least.
It isn’t personal. The internal recruiter simply used key words (SaaS, Cloud, Agile) or worse, thought his success running larger teams assured success running a smaller operation. To get the most from the contact, especially from an internal recruiter, you can do what Art did; he wrote an email that sounds a bit like this:
Thank you for your interest in my credentials for GoGo. I’m happy to hear that the cloud team would like to schedule a visit.
Opportunities in GoGo Web Services appeal to me because my most recent successes are directly related to cloud computing as a game changing approach. While Senior Director of Product Development for NowGone, I directed a business unit of 40+ professionals in three development teams, plus QA, product management, product marketing, and user documentation. We released six new products and 15 revisions in 18 months.
I look forward to speaking with you about senior positions at GoGo that resemble those responsibilities where I can drive multiple teams of 40+ to deliver exceptional, rapid value. It would be a real thrill to be a part of your pioneering cloud computing efforts. Thanks, Art.
The value of the email (or phone call) is the recruiter is now educated about what opportunities to which Art will respond. And he didn’t say “no.”